Review by gameprsn

"My favorite arcade game now on the Nintendo Gamecube!"

How I love the Crazy Taxi series. I actually considered buy a Dreamcast (when it was still new) just to play this game, and when I heard it was confirmed at the Gamecube’s release, I was in heaven. It’s a pity Sega isn’t bringing Crazy Taxi 2 or 3 to the Gamecube.

Gameplay 9/10
Hey, it’s Crazy Taxi. It doesn’t get much better than this. Picking up and dropping off the passengers hasn’t changed and is still very fun. The tip systems add even more, requiring you to do more daring stunts and take more daring jumps rather than hug walls and play chicken. There is even an option where you can control how heavy the traffic is. The action is fast and nonstop. Crazy Box (a collection of minigames) however, could have used some work. Most of the mini games are too short and boring. The extra vehicle you can unlock when you beat them, however, is a nice little treat.

Control 8/10
Easy to learn but hard to master. While beginners will love the arcade style, pickup and play controls, long time players will love doing the smooth, daring tricks that earn you higher tip and faster times. Most of the mini games in Crazy Box help you work on a certain skill and get better at it, which is another bonus. The only small problem I have with the control is the drive/reverse gear system. While the system itself is easy to get used to, it throws you off when playing other games that have the A=accelerate/B=reverse system.

Graphics 6/10
One of the few downsides to this game. Although an improvement over the PS2 and DC versions of the game, it still falls short of the GCN’s standards. Most of the models are blocky, and features on the people are “painted on” instead of stick out like they do in most next-gen games. On the up side though, the frame rate is excellent, the environments are detailed and colorful, and the taxi models are quite nice.

Sound 5/10
Got music? Sure. Got sound effects and voices? NO WAY. I personally love the fresh tracks from Offspring and Bad Religion. They’re fast and fit in well with the game’s fast pace and add intensity to the game. The sound effects are a different story. Things like crashes and wheel screeching are N64 quality and the new voiceovers are just horrible, very staticy and repetitive. Why couldn’t they just use the same voices from the arcade and DC versions?

Story N/A
You are a taxi driver from the Crazy Taxi Cab Co. and you do your job. No crazy twists or anything. Crazy Taxi isn’t meant to have a real story.

Replay Value 9/10
The replay value of this game is in the gameplay itself. It mainly depends on how much you enjoy the main game. While this game may have few extra features and no multiplayer, it is still fun to play arcade mode time and time again. If you fell in love with this game the moment you started playing, I guarantee this game will last for a while. If you thought the game was just average fun, it won’t last that long. Sega tried to add a little kick by adding Crazy Box, but the feature just falls flat.

Buy or Rent? That depends. If you saw this game at the arcade or though screenshots and thought it looked like the greatest game on earth (like I did), it is a definite buy. However, if you are skeptical about it and think it only will provide average fun, then I say rent, because the fun may go away quickly. If you already own the DC or PS2 version, don’t bother. The only real difference in the GCN version is better frame rate.

Overall 9/10 The game is one of my favorite for the GCN. It may not be the best graphical game around, but the Crazy Taxi series was never meant to be. If you loved the fast, thrilling arcade classic, this is the game for you.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 09/17/02, Updated 09/17/02

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